April 28, 2015

Weekly News: Collina in Munich, Deadline for RefCom Proposals, "Grexit" in Refereeing? and FIFA's Preparation for WWC 2015

The Third Team once again provides you with the latest news on refereeing. This time the news involve a potential Greek football "Grexit" and its consequences on two important UEFA refereeing teams. Moreover FIFA has published a video on youtube about the preparation of Womens referees ahead of the WWC in Canada. Finally, we have got some information on the UEFA referee committee composition. But before that: the match officials for the semifinals of Champions League and Europa League!


Juventus Turin - Real Madrid
UEFA Referee Observer: László Vagner (HUN)
UEFA Delegate: Sune Hellströmer (SWE)
= no Eriksson for this match. An experienced Elite referee is probable (Çakır, Kuipers...?)

FC Barcelona - Bayern München
UEFA Referee Observer: Bo Karlsson (SWE)
UEFA Delegate: Mark Blackbourne (ENG)
= no Clattenburg, no Eriksson and the only opportunity for Rizzoli

Real Madrid - Juventus Turin
UEFA Referee Observer: Jaap Uilenberg (NED)
UEFA Delegate: Danijel Jošt (SVN)
= Clattenburg or Eriksson, very likely Clattenburg

Bayern München - FC Barcelona
UEFA Referee Observer: Pierluigi Collina (ITA)
UEFA Delegate: Dennis Cruise (IRL)
= no Mažić, no Rizzoli; Clattenburg or Eriksson, very likely Eriksson


Sevilla FC - ACF Fiorentina
UEFA Referee Observer: Vítor Melo Pereira (POR)
UEFA Delegate: Barry Bright (ENG)
= likely Svein Oddvar Moen (NOR)

SSC Napoli - Dnipro
UEFA Referee Observer: Juan Fernández Marín (ESP)
UEFA Delegate: Janis Mezeckis (LVA)
= likely William Collum (SCO)

ACF Fiorentina - Sevilla FC
UEFA Referee Observer: Jean Lemmer (LUX)
UEFA Delegate: Jean Paul Mievis (BEL)
= likely no Atkinson, no Brych; likely Pavel Královec (CZE)

Dnipro - SSC Napoli
UEFA Referee Observer: Michel Vautrot (FRA)
UEFA Delegate: Panagiotis Chatzialexiou (GER)
= no Brych, maybe Carlos Velasco (ESP)

Proposals of candidates for UEFA's committees (2015-2019 period)

The UEFA national associations have been asked to propose new members for the panels of the UEFA committees including the Referee Committees. It is widely expected that Portuguese Pedro Proença will be proposed by his federation. Interesting: the national associations are not only asked to propose new members, they also have to propose the person to be replaced instead.
The deadline for these proposals is the 8 May 2015.

Greek football "Grexit" affects 2 refereeing teams

FIFA and UEFA have both sent a joined letter (here) to HFF stating that in case that the new Greek law involving violence and other stuff will go through the Greek Parliament, HFF will be expelled by FIFA. 
This could potentially harm 2 refereeing teams that have been appointed in 2 major tournaments this year. Tasos Sidiropoulos and his team, as it is already reported in this blog (here), have been appointed for the final tournament of this year's UEFA U21 edition hosted by Czech Republic. Moreover, Thalia Mitsi and Assistant Referee Chrysoula Kourompilia have been appointed by FIFA for the 2015 Women's World Cup at Canada (here).
The Third Team has the entire background of the story and will come back with it as soon as it becomes necessary.

Referees' preparation ahead of the 2015 WWC.

FIFA has released a video on their youtube account (here) which shows the preparation Women Referees have received due to the upcoming 2015 Women's World Cup in Canada.
Between 20 and 24 April, 29 referees and 44 assistant referees from a total 48 countries selected to work in Canada went through an extensive programme. Medical examinations, fitness tests and theoretical and practical sessions led by FIFA referee instructors were on the menu, all in the name of seeing them reach peak condition come June.
“We are definitely on the right track. We really worked hard in this seminar”, FIFA Head of Refereeing Massimo Busacca said. “Our work is based on the same philosophy as in men’s refereeing [remark by editors: oh dear]: we aim for quality, uniformity and consistency, while working on positioning and a focus on reading the game. We are convinced that with this kind of preparation - through which we also give important attention to the physical and psychological aspects of refereeing - we will try to reduce mistakes and have good performances during the FIFA Women’s World Cup.”
Continue Reading...

April 26, 2015

Who should referee the last 10 matches?

This question surely bothered most of us following Friday's drawing at UEFA's headquarters in Suisse Nyon. Gianni Infantino and Karl-Heinz Riedle allocated the Champions League title holders to Italian Juventus Turin, while Bayern's manager and FC Barcelona's registered member Pep Guardiola will return to his former domain Camp Nou. Also in UEFA Europa League, there are two draws that promise tension and leave some room for a surprise with Napoli facing Dnipro and ACF Fiorentina last year's winners Sevilla CF.

But: Who will take control over these matches? For whom the slogans "Road to Berlin" and "Race to Warsaw" will become true in a couple of weeks? Prediction time.

For this purpose, it is helpful to take into account all Elite referees UEFA currently has. It is very unlikely - though not impossible - to see First Group referees nominated for one of the semifinals. Actually only one of them comes into consideration for that: Szymon Marciniak of Poland.

It is quite sure that he is going to be promoted this June, has been assigned for U21-EURO 2015 and took charge of 3 UCL and 4 UEL matches this season. His advantage: he never handled SSC Napoli this season and did not take charge of any Dnipro game either. So: in case of a decided first leg or even for the first leg he might be an option to be kept in mind. His disadvantage: there were some controversial situations in Dynamo Kyiv - ACF Fiorentina, his last UEL match. Two of them were supportable, but indeed he missed a red card in the very last minute of the match. It could be that this cost his performance a good mark, which means that his Europa League season could have come to an end. 

In general, a relevant question is whether UEFA's refereeing responsibles are going to appoint both the referees for the first leg and those for the second legs at the same time or whether they are going to wait for the first leg results (which would be much wiser, but conflict with the usual time frame in which the referees get to know their appointments and can plan their absence from work etc.: 7-10 days prior to the matches).

Also to be kept in mind:
Referees, who handled a Team X in the quarterfinals, are very likely no options for handling a semifinal involving the same Team X.

But now, let's focus on the Elite Group.

Some match officials are unfortunately out of form and showed rather poor performances, have just returned from injuries or are no options given their nationality (no Italian referees in Europa League, for example, no Spanish officials in Champions League).

David Fernández Borbalán (ESP), Viktor Kassai (HUN), Gianluca Rocchi (ITA), Damir Skomina (SVN), Paolo Tagliavento (ITA), Alberto Undiano Mallenco (ESP, already handled Dnipro)

The remaining referees are:

Martin Atkinson (ENG), Deniz Aytekin (GER), Felix Brych (GER), Cüneyt Çakır (TUR), Mark Clattenburg (ENG), William Collum (SCO), Jonas Eriksson (SWE), Pavel Královec (CZE), Björn Kuipers (NED), Antonio Mateu Lahoz (ESP), Milorad Mažić (SRB), Svein Oddvar Moen (NOR),  Nicola Rizzoli (ITA), Craig Thomson (SCO), Carlos Velasco Carballo (ESP)

Let's "erase" the more unprobable candidates among them.

Deniz Aytekin was just promoted to Elite last December and convinced in his Champions League and Europa League K.O. stage matches. However, he had significant problems with penalty area decisions in Montenegro-Russia. Additionally, he is currently having problems with the same topic (penalty area decisions) in Bundesliga and 2nd Bundesliga. It is unlikely that he is considered for Europa League, specially since Felix Brych's very good performance in Madrid - Brych would be the first German choice and not Aytekin.

A Björn Kuipers in "normal" top form is helpful for every game at every level, that's for sure. The four Champions League duels clearly highlight how much he would be needed in the middle. But after his performance in Chelsea - Paris SG, which was not meeting the requirements in any way, it is very likely that UEFA won't appoint him again this season (this was already 99% sure immediately after his final whistle at Stamford Bridge).

Antonio Mateu Lahoz was observed by many committee members this season, has been promoted to Elite in December and received sonorous and important matches in both competitions. One can have different views on his performances in the three matches, but it is surely not a long shot to say that Pierluigi Collina must have some sympathies for him. As he handled Napoli in Wolfsburg, he is no option though for UEL - but he should be kept in mind, as you never know what UEFA is going to do with him.

Craig Thomson had no good season either - only 2 minor Champions League matches and 2 Europa League matches. His last appointment was Brügge - Besiktas in the Round of 16, where he was overall solid. What counts for Aytekin counts for Thomson as well: if there is a Scottish referee to be appointed, then it is rather a countryman (William Collum).

The remaining referees are (11):
Martin Atkinson (ENG), Felix Brych (GER), Cüneyt Çakır (TUR), Mark Clattenburg (ENG), William Collum (SCO), Jonas Eriksson (SWE), Pavel Královec (CZE), Milorad Mažić (SRB), Svein Oddvar Moen (NOR),  Nicola Rizzoli (ITA), Carlos Velasco Carballo (ESP)

Now we can become more precise. 4 referees are searched for the following 4 Champions League matches:

First Legs:
FC Barcelona - Bayern München & Juventus Turin - Real Madrid

Second Legs:
Bayern München - FC Barcelona & Real Madrid - Juventus Turin

Collina and his crew are surely aware of the circumstance that the decision in favour of four referees for these games is also a decision in favour of one referee who will handle the final in Berlin. There are actually only 3-4 referees who possess the necessary experience, career-readiness and personality to handle this final (which could be el clásico or Real Madrid - Bayern):

Felix Brych (GER), Cüneyt Çakır (TUR), Jonas Eriksson (SWE), Milorad Mažić (SRB).

Felix Brych has performed brilliantly in Madrid and even earned positive criticism by Spanish newspaper Marca and ManUnited player Wayne Rooney - nothing which goes without saying... But he would only be an outsider option if the final would be FC Barcelona - Juventus or el clásico. And his appointment would mean that UEFA has to wait for the second leg results. If Bayern go through, they would have to find someone else (e.g. Çakır), if Bayern fail, they could choose Brych but in this case the other referee (e.g. Çakır) would get nothing. So: very unlikely.

Cüneyt Çakır has surely become a more stable (but maybe less courageous) referee since the trouble in the aftermath of Manchester Utd. - Real Madrid in early 2013. His World Cup 2014 has been very good and was rewarded with a deserved semifinal. He was one of the few good examples who stayed themselves in Brazil and filtered the instructions of certain referee managers. In late 2014, he suffered from a pneumothorax as reported here in the blog, but returned very well and cured onto the pitch. The performance in Paris SG - Chelsea FC underlined the committee's trust in him and was overall good - some people would even say excellent. His advantage: due to the clever Round of 16 appointment, he is able to handle every match. Çakır's subsequent Europa League performances were good or even very good, too, maybe except his last performance in Napoli in front of Jozef Marko. Here, Çakır revealed some rooms for improvement, while parts of his team were not as concentrated as usual. But that is still much better than the other two officials' current shape.

Jonas Eriksson had a great 2013/14 season and an overall good / ok World Cup 2014. In my eyes, he was however not completely able to perform at the highest level in this Champions League season. One performance was surely good (Basel-Liverpool), in one match, he was not challenged at all (Schalke 0:5 Chelsea) and in another match, he awarded a wrong penalty (AS Roma 1:7 Bayern). In Porto-Basel, his Round of 16 match, he was quite challenged but did not manage to be accurate enough in the level of punishment of certain situations (our mark: 7.3) and missed 2 red cards. Eriksson was appointed for ACF Fiorentina - Dynamo Kyiv and made a match influencing mistake there as well. In the 40th minute, he wrongly sent off an away player for an alleged dive. Replays clearly show a contact between studs and foot which caused the attacker to fall (naturally). Simulation was a harsh and simply wrong decision. Three minutes later, Fiorentina scored the first goal and later qualified for the next round. Although the Swedish official one day definitely deserves to handle the biggest European club competition final, it's not his time this season in my view.

Last but not least, Milorad Mažić was definitely in the run for Berlin or rather for Warsaw. His group stage has been good / ok - you can have different views on that. But for sure, his 4 (!) Champions League group stage matches were important. Dortmund-Juventus in the Round of 16 was overall well solved with much personality and feeling for the game, although he missed some relatively clear cards. Thus, he was justifiably assigned for the Madrid derby in front of Pierluigi Collina and performed, unfortunately, below expectations: After a good first half, he made one wrong decision which influenced the whole match negatively - the missed reckless elbow by Sergio Ramos on Mario Mandžukić inside the penalty area. Following this missed penalty, the entire 2nd half was dominated by multiple infringements all belonging to the illegal usage of arms. The match became more and more heated, but never turned extremely challenging. Mažić lost the grip to some problematic players and the match, was no respected authority in some situations and failed to send off Mandžukić with a 2nd YC for - of course - recklessly using the elbow as a tool in a deliberate way. For this reason, Mažić's run for a final this year should be over from my point of view. It might be that Collina, Batta and Dallas have a different perception though. Impossible is absolutely nothing. At any rate, his appointment for any match involving a Spanish team could become difficult to sell with regard to the Spanish press (headlines like "El polémico árbitro de Atlético-Real dirigirá el Barça-Bayern" are probable). We'll see.

After all, I think Cüneyt Çakır should receive the Champions League final this year. But this season's decisions are surely more complicated and difficult than usual. 

Çakır, his team and Jozef Marko after the last test prior to Berlin? source

Jonas Eriksson should be a safe bet for a Champions League semifinal - despite his recent mistakes, he is nonetheless a reliable personality needed for these matches. Same goes for Nicola Rizzoli, who fell for a dive and wrongly awarded a match influencing penalty in St Petersburg, but who is nonetheless a 100% sure name for FC Barcelona-Bayern. Finally, Mark Clattenburg deserves to be in the middle of a semifinal as well, but as he handled Barcelona in the quarterfinals away match, he will probably get the Juventus-Real tie. 

But one official is still missing. There are three young referees who have performed quite well this season or at least achieved much. Scottish William Collum (he was solid in Bayern-Shakhtar and Monaco-Juventus, but is still young, needs more experience and should be out as he handled the Italian team), Czech Republican Pavel Královec (despite a rather dissatisfying performance in Leverkusen-Atlético in front of Pierluigi Collina, he was assigned for Juventus-Monaco - a wrong penalty (contact outside, missed by AR Slyško) decided the tie though) and Svein Oddvar Moen (good development over the last years, but still making too many minor mistakes in his matches and thus lacking the complete acceptance on the pitch here and there). As described, all three officials are probably not yet ready for a Champions League semifinal - at least in my opinion. However, it might be that Svein Oddvar Moen, who made no media-attracting mistakes and has not taken charge of a Real or Juventus match this season, comes into question for exactly this duel. If not, well, then only Milorad Mažić is left. 

In Europa League, things are similarly difficult. 

As it is quite unlikely that we'll see Felix Brych again in the Champions League this season and as he handled the Europa League final last season, he should get Fiorentina-Sevilla.

Mark Clattenburg's countryman Martin Atkinson was just solid in Schalke-Real (Jaap Uilenberg) but issued a wrong sending-off in Sevilla (UEL Round of 16) and was not good at all in Bayern-Porto (Vlado Sajn, our mark: 8.0). I think he should not be appointed again this season as a consequence.

While William Collum's and Pavel Královec's performances were good and solid, but maybe not good enough for a CL semifinal or even a EL final, they should be rewarded with a UEL semifinal (would be the second time for Královec).

Carlos Velasco Carballo took charge of FC Porto - Bayern München and was overall on expected level. No extremely good performance, but no bad one either. He recovered decently from his apparent loss of motivation and quality visible before, during and shortly after World Cup 2014. He has not yet handled Napoli or their opponents Dnipro, so that he should be kept in mind for the first or second leg of this duel.

And finally, I consider Mark Clattenburg (maybe after a successful Juventus-Real performance) as the most probable candidate for Warsaw's Europa League final. 

The way I see it, all depends on how UEFA proceeds with Milorad Mažić... 

Predictions if Mažić is considered for something more:


FC Barcelona - Bayern München: Nicola Rizzoli (ITA)
Juventus Turin - Real Madrid: Jonas Eriksson (SWE)

Bayern München - FC Barcelona: Milorad Mažić (SRB)
Real Madrid - Juventus Turin: Mark Clattenburg (ENG)

Final: Cüneyt Çakır (TUR)


SSC Napoli - Dnipro: William Collum (SCO)
Sevilla FC - ACF Fiorentina: Pavel Královec (CZE)

Dnipro - SSC Napoli: Svein Oddvar Moen (NOR)
ACF Fiorentina - Sevilla FC: Felix Brych (GER)

Final: Mark Clattenburg (ENG)

Predictions if Mažić is not considered for something more:


FC Barcelona - Bayern München: Nicola Rizzoli (ITA)
Juventus Turin - Real Madrid: Svein Oddvar Moen (NOR)

Bayern München - FC Barcelona: Jonas Eriksson (SWE)
Real Madrid - Juventus Turin: Mark Clattenburg (ENG)

Final: Cüneyt Çakır (TUR)


SSC Napoli - Dnipro: Carlos Velasco Carballo (ESP)
Sevilla FC - ACF Fiorentina: Pavel Královec (CZE)

Dnipro - SSC Napoli: William Collum (SCO)
ACF Fiorentina - Sevilla FC: Felix Brych (GER)

Final: Mark Clattenburg (ENG)

In conclusion, it is very difficult this time. Many referees have recommended themselves for higher tasks, but are not ready for the last big step which is demanded on Champions League semifinal level. It is also evident that although UEFA's Elite Group consists of more than 20 names, maximum 5-6 of them are - at the moment - capable of handling really huge matches. The time where Collina and his team could revert to a large pool of candidates for such games (including Kassai and Skomina) seems to be over.
Another question is whether UEFA should trust Björn Kuipers, who is urgently needed in Champions League considering the limited options UEFA otherwise has.

What are your predictions?
Continue Reading...

April 21, 2015

Europa League 2014/15 - Quarterfinals - Referee Appointments (II)

These are the officials appointed by UEFA for the second leg matches of 2014-15 Europa League Quarterfinals Round. Four Elite officials have been selected. Among others, Turkish Cüneyt Çakır will take charge of SSC Napoli - VfL Wolfsburg observed by  Slovakian UEFA Referees Committee's member Jozef Marko. 

Continue Reading...

April 20, 2015

Champions League 2014/15 - Quarterfinals - Referee Appointments (2nd legs, Wednesday)

Felix Brych has been entrusted to take control over Wednesday's Madrid derby at Santiago Bernabeu. Observed by Vice Refereeing Officer Hugh Dallas, the 39-year old German will handle his 32nd Champions League match.
In addition, William Collum has been appointed for the parallel match at Monaco's Stade Louis II between AS Monaco and Juventus Turin, observed by former Champions League final official Terje Hauge of Norway.

Good luck to both teams!

Continue Reading...

April 19, 2015

Champions League 2014/15 - Quarterfinals - Referee Appointments (2nd legs, Tuesday)

English Martin Atkinson has been appointed to take charge of the crucial return leg of FC Bayern München facing FC Porto at home after their 1:3 loss suffered last week. Norwegian Svein Oddvar Moen will control FC Barcelona - Paris SG, which is more or less decided after Barcelona's clear 3:1 win at Parc des Princes.

Good luck to both teams.

Tuesday, 21/04/2015, 20:45 CET
Allianz Arena, München (Germany)
FC Bayern München - FC Porto
Referee: Martin Atkinson (ENG)
Assistant Referee 1: Michael Mullarkey (ENG)
Assistant Referee 2: Stephen Child (ENG)
Additional Assistant Referee 1: Anthony Taylor (ENG)
Additional Assistant Referee 2: Craig Pawson (ENG)
Fourth Official: Darren England (ENG)
UEFA Referee Observer: Vlado Sajn (SVN)
UEFA Delegate: Charles Schaack (LUX)
Blog Referee Observer: Mike (AUT)

Tuesday, 21/04/2015, 20:45 CET
Camp Nou, Barcelona (Spain)
FC Barcelona - Paris SG
Referee: Svein Oddvar Moen (NOR)
Assistant Referee 1: Kim Thomas Haglund (NOR)
Assistant Referee 2: Frank Andås (NOR)
Additional Assistant Referee 1: Kim Henry Johnsen (NOR)
Additional Assistant Referee 2: Svein-Erik Edvartsen (NOR)
Fourth Official: Sven Erik Midthjell (NOR)
UEFA Referee Observer: Francesco Bianchi (SUI)
UEFA Delegate: David Findlay (SCO)
Blog Referee Observer: Edward (GRE)
Continue Reading...

April 18, 2015

Weekly News: Some Quotes & UEFA Officials for next week

The Third Team once more provides you with the latest news, this time in form of quotes and attached reports. Furthermore, please find the UEFA officials for next week at the end of the post.

Continue Reading...

April 14, 2015

Europa League - Quarterfinals - Referee Appointments (I)

These are the officials appointed by UEFA for the first leg encounters of 2014-15 Europa League Quarterfinals Round. Among others, Polish Category 1 referee Szymon Marciniak will take charge of Dynamo Kyiv - ACF Fiorentina under the eyes of  German UEFA Referee Observer Eugen Strigel.

16 April 2015

21:05 CET, Estadio Ramón Sánchez Pizjuán, Seville (ESP)
Sevilla FC - Zenit St Petersburg
Referee: Bas Nijhuis (NED)
Assistant Referee 1: Rob van de Ven (NED)
Assistant Referee 2: Charles Schaap (NED)
Additional Assistant Referee 1: Kevin Blom (NED)
Additional Assistant Referee 2: Peter Janssen (NED)
Fourth Official: Bas van Dongen (NED)
UEFA Referee Observer: Konrad Plautz (AUT)
UEFA Delegate: Danilo Filacchione (ITA)
Blog Referee Observer: Salva (ISR)

21:05 CET, Jan Breydelstadion, Bruges (BEL)
Club  Brugge - Dnipro
Referee: Damir Skomina (SVN)
Assistant Referee 1: Jure Praprotnik (SVN)
Assistant Referee 2: Robert Vukan (SVN)
Additional Assistant Referee 1: Matej Jug (SVN)
Additional Assistant Referee 2: Slavko Vinčić (SVN)
Fourth Official: Andraž Kovacic (SVN)
UEFA Referee Observer: Bertrand Layec (FRA)
UEFA Delegate: Eduard Dervishaj (ESP)
Blog Referee Observer: Niclas (GER)

21:05 CET, NSK Olimpiyskyi, Kyiv (UKR)
Dynamo Kyiv - ACF Fiorentina
Referee: Szymon Marciniak (POL)
Assistant Referee 1: Paweł Sokolnicki (POL)
Assistant Referee 2: Tomasz Listkiewicz (POL)
Additional Assistant Referee 1: Paweł Raczkowski (POL)
Additional Assistant Referee 2: Tomasz Musiał (POL)
Fourth Official: Radosław Siejka (POL)
UEFA Referee Observer: Eugen Strigel (GER)
UEFA Delegate Ainar Leppänen (EST)
Blog Referee Observer: Gitzlo (AUT)

21:05 CET, VfL Wolfsburg Arena, Wolfsburg (GER)
VfL Wolfsburg - SSC Napoli
Referee: Antonio Mateu Lahoz (ESP)
Assistant Referee 1: Pau Cebrián Devís (ESP)
Assistant Referee 2: Roberto Díaz Pérez del Palomar (ESP)
Additional Assistant Referee 1: Javier Estrada Fernández (ESP)
Additional Assistant Referee 2: Alejandro Hernández Hernández (ESP)
Fourth Official: Teodoro Sobrino Magán (ESP)
UEFA Referee Observer: Nikolay Levnikov (RUS)
UEFA Delegate: Adrian Titcombe (ENG)
Blog Referee Observer:
Continue Reading...

April 13, 2015

Champions League 2014/15 - Quarterfinals - Referee Appointments (1st Legs, Wednesday)

English Elite official Mark Clattenburg has been appointed  to take charge of Wednesday's  clash PSG - Barcelona at Parc des Princes. At the same time, Spanish Elite Carlos Velasco will handle Porto - Bayern at Estádio do Dragão, observed by UEFA Referees Committee's member Bo Karlsson from Sweden. 


Wednesday, 15/04/2015, 20:45 CET
Parc des Princes, Paris (France)
Paris SG - FC Barcelona
Referee: Mark Clattenburg (ENG, photo)
Assistant Referee 1: Simon Beck (ENG)
Assistant Referee 2: Jake Collin (ENG)
Additional Assistant Referee 1: Anthony Taylor (ENG)
Additional Assistant Referee 2: Andre Marriner (ENG)
Fourth Official: Stuart Burt (ENG)
UEFA Referee Observer: Paul Allaerts (BEL)
UEFA Delegate: Jacques Antenen (SUI)
Blog Referee Observer: Edward (GRE)

Wednesday, 15/04/2015, 20:45 CET
Estádio do Dragão, Porto (Portugal)
FC Porto - Bayern München
Referee: Carlos Velasco Carballo (ESP)
Assistant Referee 1: Roberto Alonso Fernández (ESP)
Assistant Referee 2: Juan Carlos Yuste Jiménez (ESP)
Additional Assistant Referee 1: Carlos Del Cerro Grande (ESP)
Additional Assistant Referee 2: Jesús Gil Manzano (ESP)
Fourth Official: Raúl Cabañero Martínez (ESP)
UEFA Referee Observer: Bo Karlsson (SWE)
UEFA Delegate: René Eberle (SUI)
Blog Referee Observer: Chefren (ITA)
Continue Reading...

April 12, 2015

Champions League 2014/15 - Quarterfinals - Referee Appointments (1st Legs, Tuesday)

Serbian Milorad Mažić has been appointed to take charge of Tuesday's Madrid derby at Estadio Vicente Calderón in the context of the UEFA Champions League quarterfinals. The 42-year old Elite official will be observed by Chief Refereeing Officer Pierluigi Collina. At the same time, Czech Republican Pavel Královec will oversee Juventus Turin - AS Monaco, observed by Portuguese Vítor Melo Pereira.

Tuesday, 14/04/2015, 20:45 CET
Estadio Vicente Calderón, Madrid (Spain)
Atlético Madrid - Real Madrid
Referee: Milorad Mažić (SRB, photo)
Assistant Referee 1: Milovan Ristić (SRB)
Assistant Referee 2: Dalibor Djurdjević (SRB)
Additional Assistant Referee 1: Danilo Grujić (SRB)
Additional Assistant Referee 2: Dejan Filipović (SRB)
Fourth Official: Dejan Petrović (SRB)
UEFA Referee Observer: Pierluigi Collina (ITA)
UEFA Delegate: Roland Ospelt (LIE)
Blog Referee Observer: Niclas (GER)

Tuesday, 14/04/2015, 20:45 CET
Juventus Stadium, Turin (Italy)
Juventus Turin - AS Monaco
Referee: Pavel Královec (CZE)
Assistant Referee 1: Roman Slyško (SVK)
Assistant Referee 2: Martin Wilczek (CZE)
Additional Assistant Referee 1: Radek Příhoda (CZE)
Additional Assistant Referee 2: Michal Patak (CZE)
Fourth Official: Tomas Mokrusch (CZE)
UEFA Referee Observer: Vítor Melo Pereira (POR)
UEFA Delegate: Benny Jacobsen (DEN)
Blog Referee Observer: Maxi R. (GER)
Continue Reading...

April 5, 2015

Weekly News: Nicolae Rainea's death, Greek match-fixing trouble, Turkish professionalization & UEFA Officials for Quarterfinals

The 3rd Team once again provides you with the latest news across the world from the referee's point of view. Three times World Cup referee Nicolae Rainea has died aged 81. Furthermore 5 Superleague referees testified in Greek justice in conjuction with the investigation for fixed matches and the so-called "Criminal Organization". Moreover TFF has officially named the first full-time professional referees. Finally, you are provided with the UEFA officials for the quarterfinals' first legs.

R.I.P. Nicolae Rainea

Over a career spanning 24 years, Rainea racked up a stellar list of matches as he became one of the most respected officials in the world. He retired in 1983 after adding the European Champion Clubs' Cup final to a CV that already included back-to-back UEFA Cup deciders in 1977 and 1978, and the 1980 UEFA European Championship final. No Romanian referee has bettered his compilation of three FIFA World Cups.
Born on 19 November 1933, Rainea played in the lower leagues before turning to refereeing in 1959. Within six years he was officiating at first division matches and quickly made the FIFA list, in 1967. He oversaw three Romanian Cup finals and 267 top-flight games, while his international assignments also included the 1978 UEFA Super Cup.
After hanging up his whistle aged 49, he remained in football as a referee observer and regional football association president. He later became an honorary member of the Romanian Football Federation (FRF) and an honorary citizen of the city Galati. He was decorated by two Romanian presidents, Ion Iliescu and Traian Băsescu.
After an untreated mild cold had turned into a pulmonary edema, Rainea suffered a cardiac arrest while being in hospital and died in Bucharest.

Greek Justice has officially charged 5 referees.

Since 2011 Greek Justice is looking at the biggest "match-fixing" scandal the country has seen. UEFA has already sent over 30 suspected matches.
At a new development Greek Justice now looks at the existence of a "Criminal Organization". According to several media in Greece, 5 Superleague Referees are charged by the authorities of influencing the result of some matches with their calls.
The 3rd Team knows the names of those 5 referees but won't publish them since as lawyers say "everyone is innocent until proven guilty".

Top Turkish referees become full-time professionals.

The Turkish Football Federation (TFF) yesterday took a giant step over the issue of professional refereeing, which has been on the agenda for a long time in Turkish football. With the contracts signed in March, Cüneyt Çakir, Hüseyin Göçek, Bariş Şimşek, Mete Kalkavan, Ali Palabiyik and Firat Aydinus have officially become Turkey's first professional referees.

According to a statement made by the TFF, the referees working within the federation must come to the administrative center of the TFF in Riva and train under the supervision of the Central Referee Board. The referees on contract will also provide training in courses, conferences and seminars. During their shift, the referees will contribute to preparing special content, consisting of video footage, that will be used for training referees. After a three-month pilot scheme, the other referees will be included into contractual refereeing. Contractual refereeing has been put into action as a result of work and preparation that has been made since 2012. During this period, the TFF has carried out many innovation regulations in relation to referees. The wages of referees have increased by 91 percent since 2012 and they have been given more authority in order to prevent the continual verbal attacks and assaults. The other innovations brought in by the TFF are the new six-referee system and vanishing spray.

UEFA Officials & Early Predictions for CL / EL

Champions League Quarterfinals

Atlético Madrid - Real Madrid
UEFA Referee Observer: Pierluigi Collina (ITA)
UEFA Delegate: Roland Ospelt (LIE)
Prediction: Milorad Mažić (SRB)

Juventus Turin - AS Monaco
UEFA Referee Observer: Vítor Melo Pereira (POR)
UEFA Delegate: Benny Jacobsen (DEN)
Prediction: Carlos Velasco Carballo (ESP)

Paris SG - FC Barcelona
UEFA Referee Observer: Paul Allaerts (BEL)
UEFA Delegate: Jacques Antenen (SUI)
Prediction: Mark Clattenburg (ENG)

FC Porto - Bayern München
UEFA Referee Observer: Bo Karlsson (SWE)
UEFA Delegate: René Eberle (SUI)
Prediction: Nicola Rizzoli (ITA)

Europa League Quarterfinals

Sevilla FC - Zenit St Petersburg
UEFA Referee Observer: Konrad Plautz (AUT)
UEFA Delegate: Danilo Filacchione (ITA)
Prediction: Szymon Marciniak (POL) 

Club Brügge - FC Dnipro Dnipropetrovsk
UEFA Referee Observer: Bertrand Layec (FRA)
UEFA Delegate: Eduard Dervishaj (ESP)
Prediction: Ovidiu Hategan (ROU) or Svein Oddvar Moen (NOR)

Dynamo Kyiv - ACF Fiorentina
UEFA Referee Observer: Eugen Strigel (GER)
UEFA Delegate: Ainar Leppänen (EST)
Prediction: William Collum (SCO)

VfL Wolfsburg - SSC Napoli
UEFA Referee Observer: Nikolay Levnikov (RUS)
UEFA Delegate: Adrian Titcombe (ENG)
Prediction: Antonio Mateu Lahoz (ESP)
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April 4, 2015

Video Training - Severity of Offences Series (1) - Solved

This is the first post of a new series called "Severity of Offences" that will appear regularly on this blog. It aims at improving your knowledge about and feeling for the correct level of punishment to be applied following challenges made by players, attempting to meet the standard implemented by UEFA and passed to Europe's national football association. Recent video clips will be deployed to illustrate the different criteria to be kept in mind when assessing tackles.


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Referees and Assistant Referees for U-17 EURO 2015 appointed

Following the draw of 2 April, the following referees and assistant referees have been chosen by UEFA's Referee Committee to attend this year's Under-17 European Championship in Bulgaria from 6 to 22 May. It will be the first Under-17 mini tournament ever played with 16 teams. The 3rd Team provides you with the happy officials selected.

Adrien Jaccottet (SUI) is among the officials  (source: LeMatin)

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